Saturday, March 15, 2014
Remember that one time I took pictures of each and every item of clothing I own and posted it online? Well, most of those clothes I still wear constantly. In fact, many are literally worn out. In anticipation of Spring (it already feels like summer here in the OC!) I purged again. I got rid of tops and sweaters that were looking shabby, a few tops that shrank funny, and some of my dresses that look a little too "junior department."
But shopping means something very different to me now. Here's how my shopping strategy has changed.
2. I only go into my favorite stores. Much of my new wardrobe comes from Zara, Loft, Nordstrom Rack, and Max Studio because they usually have items that fit my subtly feminine vacation style and they are affordable. I hit those places first. I steer clear of Forever 21 and similar stores because the clothes don't last. Surprisingly, my Target clothes hold up really well, so I still shop there sometimes.
3. I only buy things that fit me well. This means I have to try stuff on. If I'm too lazy to lug Sisi's stroller into the dressing room and try it on, then I obviously don't need it. I don't shop on the internet as much for this reason. Even with free returns, I end up keeping items that don't fit me perfectly because it's a pain to send them back.
4. I avoid clearance racks. Ever notice how the stuff on clearance is usually very eye-catching, but a little weird or colorful or kitschy? For example, I bought a pair of khakis with lobsters all over them because they were on clearance. Guess what? I wore them twice and then donated them. I don't live in the Hamptons and attend clam bakes on a regular basis. But they looked so cute on the rack!
The classics, like a perfect black blazer, can rarely be found on clearance.
5. I take my sweet time. Since I'm already content with my wardrobe, there is no pressure to buy quickly. I'm checking off my list one by one over the course of many many mall trips. If I don't find my perfect skinny jeans or sandals right away, who cares? I have a closet full of items I really love. No rush.
6. Self-awareness. I know my body and what looks good on me.
- I am fairly pear shaped- I wear a small on top, and a medium on the bottom. Therefore, patterned jeans, short skirts, and white pants can look awful on me (much to my chagrin! I LOVE patterned jeans and white pants.)
- I have a small head for my body. V-necks, scoop necks and boat-necks tend to balance out my small head and even out my pear shape. Sometimes I do buy crew necks, but I usually regret it.
- I have this in-between half-Asian skin tone. Soft pastels, especially lavender, just don't look great on me. I'm not sure why. I'm also coming to terms with the fact that gray is not my best color.
- I am short. 5' 2" to be exact. So crazy patterns, layers, and ruffles seem to overpower my short frame. I get a little jealous of my tall skinny friend Angel who can literally wear 5 layers in all different patterns and not be swallowed up in them.
7. Picked a base color (black) for most of my core items. Most, but not all, of my basic items are black. Most women have an assortment of black, navy, camel, brown and gray basics in their closets. We feel like we need all the neutrals. That means we also need a bunch of different shoes and possibly purses to coordinate. But I find if I stick to black, I can mix and match just about everything. My Grandma would roll her eyes if she saw how much black is in my closet. "Ladies don't wear black!" was her motto. Her closet looked like an Easter basket, no joke.
So, here is my Spring/Summer shopping list. I found some of the items already, and some I'm still researching.
11. PERFECT BLACK BIKINI. Retro style maybe? Something I can surf in. Let me know if you have suggestions.